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An Emotional Mother’s Day & One Pot Mexican Skillet

Time flies when you're on an emotional roller coaster.

Kaitlyn Bristowe

This week was a tumultuous rollercoaster of emotions. Every day I felt like I was grasping at the edge of a cliff that was crumbling every time I tried to get my grip. Thank goodness my Ninja was there to reach out his hand and pull me up onto safe ground.

Mother’s Day is always a mixed bag for me. This year was a shit show of emotions. This year I found out that my “Other Mother” passed away.

When my parents moved out to BC and left my siblings and I in Winnipeg I thankfully had a wonderful friend at work that “took me in”. I had worked with her for a few years, she was 30 years older than me and always had a listening ear, a firm hug and amazing advice. We were a tight little group in our small family run office. I was very lucky. She helped me through Ninja and my up and down relationship, through my parents moving, through University, and later my pregnancy.

Over the years we kept in contact through messages. She was always upbeat, encouraging, and kind. I had no idea her health was failing her. The last time she reached out was in March. She wrote to me out of the blue. She wrote,

Okay Kristin AKA Crystal! You live in the MOST beautiful place in Canada!!! Love you, your kids (your ninja) and your life!!! You are amazing!!

Love your other mother,
I think she knew. I wrote back that after all this pandemic BS she had to follow up with our deal and she had to visit. That I would take her to all the best wineries and we could sit on a real beach (her cabin was on a river up by Ninja’s family cabin). Knowing that I will never see her again was quite a blow to my heart.

Keeping busy is always best for a broken heart, at least for me, so luckily we had a VERY busy weekend planned! We had the Shine Dance Competition! It was such an emotionally exhausting experience!! The Girls train all year for this and then it is finally here and it is a mess of feelings. HBear had been rehearsing her lyrical solo since LAST year but because of COVID was unable to perform it until this weekend. She chose to do a lyrical dance to Yellow. Yellow is such a special song for our family. It is the song my Mom asked for at her funeral. It is the colour that she asked us to look for when we need her. She IS yellow 💛.

HBear was incredible. She danced her little heart out for Nana. When she finished she came upstairs and she was bawling. Just overcome with everything she just expressed through her dance. It was... heart bursting. She received a gold! However, she was up against some amazing performances and she didn’t place. She was DEVASTATED. She felt that she let Nana down?!?! And then they announced the IMPACT awards for the entire session and she won! The adjudicator said that the marriage of music and dance was incredible and even through Zoom she could feel what HBear was emoting and that she could tell that the piece was personal and special 💛.

I remember my Mom even through chemo insisting that she take HBear to ballet class because it made her heart happy to watch her dance. HBear started dancing the same month we found out Mom had cancer. Her finale was EXACTLY 24 hours to the minute after she died. I remember sitting there looking down the aisle at Ninja and my Dad at looking at my watch 7:00pm... and then the curtains opened. The show must go on.

Seeing HBear dance would have made her so happy. Watching her perform that solo for my Mom was overwhelming. Hearing her cry that she let Nana down was staggering. She is SO hard on herself and I tried to take it all in calmly so that I can help her see how absolutely amazing she is and how proud she has made us AND Nana. It was a lot.

SBean had her first competitive piece this weekend too. She was SO nervous. I’m not going to lie, I was sick to my stomach thinking about my Baby up on that stage under the big lights. She has such high expectations for herself and I was trying to temper those expectations with a cold dose of reality. I was worried about how she would react if she got criticism from the judges. It WAS only her first time competing and she IS only 8 years old!!!! She was performing a contemporary trio with her 2 best dance friends to Mariah Carey’s Anytime You Need a Friend. They did AMAZING! I was so proud of her for just getting up there let alone doing such an incredible job! She finished and ran into my arms in tears. When you perform your heart out it is SO overwhelming!! They won a gold, 1st place in duet/trio, an IMPACT award for friendship AND the Rising Star Away for duet/trio!

So PROUD of these Girls!! I was in and out of tears all weekend. I was joking that now I know how Tiger Woods feels golfing at the US Open on Father’s Day!!! 😂

Through the ups and downs, the highs and lows... we did it and I couldn't be prouder and wouldn't have wanted my Mother's Day spent any other way 💛.

Check out How Was Your Week, Honey? Episode #223 Gettin’ After It Early! HERE! This week we chat about the girl's dance competition. Topics: boob tattoo, vaccine side effects, walking to school, McDonalds fight, Shine, Painted Rock & Mother's Day.

This week I filled in for Matt on Our Liner Notes and Chris and I took a walk through our formative years to discuss the male made music that inspired us. Check out PART 1 HERE!

I've been waiting to share this 1!!! I love Mexican, I love 1 pot meals and I love this dish!!! It is so easy to make and bursting with Mexican flavours!

One Pot Mexican Skillet

Adapted from Savoury Nothings

1 tablespoon oil
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 lb ground beef
1 red pepper, diced
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 tablespoon taco seasoning
1 cup uncooked rice
1.5 cups beef broth
1 jar salsa
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can corn, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup shredded Mexican cheese

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook for 2 minutes. Add the garlic and beef and cook until browned. Stir in the diced peppers and cook for 1 more minute.

Stir in the tomato paste, taco seasoning, salt and pepper. Cook for 1 minute. Add the rice, broth, salsa, black beans and corn and stir well.

Bring to a simmer, cover the skillet with a lid, reduce the heat and gently cook for around 15 minutes, or until cooked through. Add more broth if necessary.

Top with shredded cheese and cover for another 2 minutes, if you like. Serve with your favourite toppings.

This week is spirit week at HBear's school! This week was also Star Wars Day which is a big thing in this household LOL. It was a very busy week so I used the crockpot and made my Mom's favourite pulled pork sandwiches and Ninja treated us to his famous homemade pizza!

Friday, Saturday, and Sunday were filled with dance competition! The team spirit that these Girls showed this weekend was phenomenal! Girls stayed late to cheer each other on, people came early to make sure there were cheerleaders for every dancer and all the camaraderie was beautiful to watch. These Kids certainly lifted each other up and gave each other confidence to get out there and do their best! It was incredible! Hearing their laughter after what they have gone through this past year was music to my ears.

On Saturday we got home and Ninja had beautiful flowers for his dancing ladies, a delicious bottle of wine for me and open arms for much-needed cuddles!

Mother’s Day. I was woken up by cuddles and SBean made me a delicious oatmeal breakfast in bed! We got to the dance studio early to watch HBear's best dance friends compete and there were mimosas and a beautiful cupcake bouquet made by my DBesty. While we were at dance SBean and Daddy we’re busy baking their hearts out! SBean found a recipe online and followed it to a T! I was blown away by her gift to me, a perfect vanilla cake complete with raspberries and pink buttercream frosting! I got spoiled by beautiful homemade cards, wonderful gifts, and a delicious dinner from Bogners!

It was a wonderful week filled with laughter, tears, and so much love. I am grateful 💛.


Christina May 13, 2021 at 5:10 PM  

Sounds like quite an emotional weekend with a combination of joy and sorrow. I've always found that the sorrow helps you to appreciate the joy even more. Your daughters are beautiful in their dance costumes. I'm a dance mom too. Seeing our children find success is certainly pure joy.

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